Chloe Arriaga of Soledad dances as Clara with Gatlin Hooten as the Prince in the 60th “Nutcracker Ballet” in King City. (Photos by Ryan Cronk)

KING CITY — “The Nutcracker Ballet” returned to the stage last month for its 60th anniversary production in South Monterey County, featuring local students from Monterey County Dance Theatre and character actors from The Stage Hands who performed the holiday classic at Robert Stanton Theater in King City.

The ballet, produced by the dance school and Monterey County Dance Foundation, was first introduced in the area in 1959 and is considered one of the oldest “Nutcracker” productions in the United States.

This year’s milestone show also included guest appearances from past dancers and cast members as well as aerial choreography by world-renowned Flying by Foy during its three performances, from Dec. 13 to 15.

“The Nutcracker Ballet” featured a total of 125 dancers from the dance school located in King City. Most of the students live in South Monterey County, from Gonzales in the north to Bradley in the south.

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Ryan Cronk is the managing editor for King City Rustler and Salinas Valley Tribune, a unified publication of Greenfield News, Soledad Bee and Gonzales Tribune. He covers general news for South Monterey County and the surrounding communities.


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